Looking to jump-start your diet? If you’re Jewish- this weekend you can kill two birds with one stone (and don’t worry- you have until Friday at sundown to repent for using this upcoming holiday as a diet jumpstart) Beginning this Friday night, it is Yom Kippur, or as us Jews like to call it, Judgment Day. For this reason, we fast all day as a kind of bargaining chip with G-d, to say: “hey look, a whole day of suffering, that must have been enough to delete out all my sins over the past year, leaving me on my merry way until next year” So… I know that last year we gave you a few tips on how to have a healthy fast- don’t worry, we wont blab about that again. This year we will rant about how to turn a (torturous-to-some AKA Amy) Jewish holiday into the start of a new you. Which makes sense- since it is the Jewish New Year!
Why Will You Be Doing A Good Thing?
Perhaps you are worrying about how on earth you will go a whole day without eating? Or if you are like me, you are not giving the food a second blink, but frantically obsessing over how to go a whole day without coffee? (PS- I start at T-3 days with Green tea, then nothing at T-1. D-Day is still rough, but the headache shouldn’t get you, after following this plan.)
- Fasting for a day will shrink your stomach (yay) but…be sure not to blow it on break fast. When the time comes Saturday night, remember that after fasting for a day, your stomach now needs much less food to be full. In order to keep that going, be smart about the amount you eat. Go for ½ bagel or a whole bagel scooped out with cream cheese and lox (not the salty kind!), plus some salads and veggies.
- Fasting for a day will decrease your sugar cravings. After not eating sugar for 24 hours, your body naturally lowers its desire for the sweet treat. Keep it going! For break fast- focus on protein and healthy fat, while limiting the sugar (or carbohydrates) Just an FYI- a bagel has around 75-90 grams of carbohydrates. An average person should be consuming around 240g per day- so this one item can be over 1/3 of your daily budget for carbohydrates (which includes breads, cereals, pasta, rice, fruit, dairy, sugary drinks, juice, desserts, etc.)
- Yes, you will loose a little water weight. Sometime it just takes a little time of “feeling skinny” to motivate you to stick to a healthy diet regimen. If you are one of these people, then this holiday is for you. Although you will not loose any legitimate weight that will stay off, fasting for a day will leave your body a bit dehydrated, and since water carries weight, you will loose a pound or two. So again, don’t blow it by going overboard on breakfast and use the feeling as motivation for the dietary changes that you have wanting to make
So I know that for most people this Holiday is not a favorite (especially for a certain special Yom Kippur birthday girl!) but I hope this list of potential benefits motivates you to embrace this year’s fast as a good thing! Oh, and good luck on Judgment Day, hoping for the best myself…
--Samantha Jacobs, MS RD CDN